Effects of Internal Control Weaknesses, Financial Independence and Size on Quality of Financial Statements in the Tanzanian Local Government Authorities

Shufaa Al-Beity


This study examines the relationship between internal control weaknesses (ICWs), independence, and size on the quality of financial statements of local government authorities (LGAs) in Tanzania. The analysis is based on data from a large sample of LGAs’ financial statements for four years from FY 2010/11 to FY 2013/14. The study employed logistic regression to examine whether ICWs (fraud prevention plan, risk management, accounting system, and IT controls), financial independence, and size of LGAs determine financial statement errors/restatements in the LGAs. The study shows that large and financially dependent LGAs with accounting system ICWs are more likely to have lower financial statement quality. However, other ICWs (IT controls, fraud prevention, and risk management) results were insignificant.  These results may be attributed to the level of compliance and implementation of the parent ministry’s directives among LGAs.  Therefore, practitioners and policymakers should ensure that LGAs not only adopt directives/policies but also fully comply and implement with their requirements as well as build financial management capacity to increase LGAs’ financial independence.

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[ISSN 0856 2253 (Print) & ISSN 2546-213X (Online)]